She stood in front of me, gun in her left hand, cypress in her right.
"I can't draw the flower without an eraser," I said.
She took me in a rush, smashing her right hand into the table. I shivered so deeply I almost remembered what it felt like as a child.
"You are not going to be the pathetic end result of all my hard work."
I watched intently as the cypress fell from her hand so gracefully, as if crushing it made it more beautiful. She hastily brushed it off the table, grabbing my neck.
"You pathetic little shit."
She spit on me. I did not flinch. Tears welled from my eyes, unbeknownst to me, trickling slow, like cold lava down my cheeks. The moment it hit the corner of my lips, she threw me backwards off my chair.
"Speak you fucking coward."
My cheek pressed against the soot of the floor, eyes glazed, I caught sight of the cypress again; the little white bulbs of pollen sprinkled so gently, as if deliberate, over its deep red petals. It reminded me of Christmas.
She stood one of her boots on top of it, kicking it towards me dismantled against the friction. I looked up at her, just as I used to with my sweet mother, speaking slow, and sweetly, "Your anger is weakness. You have not lived true pain. I would tell you a story about it, but I'm afraid you haven't got the depth."
"No," I continued, keeping my pace, "You feel powerful now. I'm on the floor, you're with the gun. How dare you think you are in control here."
She kicked my face, hard. I saw white light and my ears started to ring, my face felt a sensation between numb and burning. I looked up at her again, and this time I smiled.